Turkey reports second coronavirus death

By: AFP      Published: 01:38 AM, 19 Mar, 2020
Turkey reports second coronavirus death
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a press conference held after the coordination meeting to fight against the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, at the Cankaya Palace in Ankara on March 18, 2020.–AFP

Turkey on Wednesday reported its second coronavirus fatality, the Turkish health minister said, as the number of confirmed cases rose to 191.

“A 61-year-old male patient has died,” Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter, but giving no further details.

The confirmation of a second death comes after Koca said on Tuesday that an 89-year-old man was the first fatality in Turkey.

“The tests concluded today show the importance of following the measures which have been taken so far,” he said.

Koca said there were 93 new cases, up from 98 and so bringing the total number of those recorded to 191.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan earlier on Wednesday called on Turks to leave their homes as little as possible as he announced a $15 billion aid package to support the Turkish economy.

“If we apply the measures already outlined, we can keep the time at home limited to three weeks,” Erdogan said in Ankara.

Turkey has already temporarily shut schools, universities and public spaces such as cinemas, theatres and gyms in a bid to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.